Pelicans rolling at home: 3 takeaways from win over the Bulls

New Orleans Pelicans guard Trey Murphy III (25) and forward Brandon Ingram (14) Credit: Andrew Wevers-USA TODAY Sports
New Orleans Pelicans guard Trey Murphy III (25) and forward Brandon Ingram (14) Credit: Andrew Wevers-USA TODAY Sports /

The New Orleans Pelicans got their second shorthanded win in as many days, defeating the Chicago Bulls 124-110 at home.

The Pels shot the lights out from 3-point range for the second night in a row and once again got contributions from a number of players.

With Zion Williamson out, these were impressive wins by the Pelicans that showed off their considerable depth of talent.

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There was plenty to like about the Pels’ win over the Bulls, but three things stand out.

New Orleans Pelicans vs. Chicago Bulls: 3 takeaways

The Pels are rolling at home

The Pelicans started building a home court advantage last season and that momentum has carried over, as New Orleans is 5-2 at home and has had raucous home crowds behind them, including again last night.

Players like Jose Alvarado and Larry Nance Jr. get the crowd going when they enter the game and coach Willie Green has deployed them brilliantly in the latest 3-game winning streak.

If you look at last year’s standings, one thing both conferences had in common was that the top teams all dominated at home. The Pels were just 19-22 at home last season, so are on a much-better pace this year.

Defending the home court is the first step to becoming a contender and the New Orleans Pelicans are on their way.

A different guy every night

The thing that makes the New Orleans Pelicans tough is that they have a number of guys that can beat you on any given night. Zion Williamson was out last night and Brandon Ingram only scored 16 points and the Pels still managed to win by double digits.

Against the Grizzlies it was CJ McCollum and the bench that led the Pels to victory and last night it was a mixture of McCollum, Jonas Valanciunas and Trey Murphy III, who got a spot start. Against the Grizzlies, Valanciunas had just two points and barely played, but stepped up for 22 points last night.

This team isn’t just a “Big 3” and has the depth to win games even when their best two guys are out or have off nights.

Trey Murphy III is like a tall Klay Thompson

Trey Murphy III was 7-of-9 overall last night for 19 points, showing off a quick release and unlimited range.

He’s a better than advertised defender and rebounder, but his shooting is starting to look like a young Klay Thompson, which is high praise considering Thompson is one of the greatest shooters of all time.

TMIII is currently shooting 46.6 percent from the field and 42.2 percent from 3-point range. He’s playing 28 minutes per game and averaging 8.4 shots, a number that needs to go up.

If you look at Thompson’s second-year numbers, his shooting splits are actually slightly worse, with the only difference that Thompson was playing more minutes and getting more attempts. TMIII is grabbing more rebounds and has similar assist numbers as a young Klay Thompson, so I don’t think that the comparison is bonkers.

TMIII as your team’s 4th or 5th-best scoring option is a pretty good weapon to have, and there will be plenty of games like this when he gets hot and helps carry the team with his shooting.

The New Orleans Pelicans are rolling but will face their biggest test of the season Friday at home against the Celtics. The crowd will be rocking and the Pels should be at full strength, so this should be one of the best games of the young season.

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